A Dayton graduate says a restaurant opened five years ago is dying so an even better one can live.
Reflections, a restaurant at 3377 U.S. Route 35 East in West Alexandria, is morphing into The Bison and The Boar, said Isiah Davis, the steakhouse’s chef and general manager.
Like Reflections, The Bison and The Boar will be owned by Dan Appenzeller, but it will be a complete departure from the current concept, said Davis, a 2005 Dunbar High School graduate.
The restaurant will celebrate its final day as Reflections, an eatery that serves traditional America fare, with a special event featuring music from Roberts and Ward on Feb. 16.
If things go as planned, Davis said The Bison and The Boar will celebrate its grand opening Feb. 22.
“(Customers) are saying goodbye (to Reflections),” the 2005 graduate of Dayton’s Dunbar High School said. “This is completely different. The atmosphere, the ambiance, the food, the service... everything will be different.”
Davis said he and his staff will work hard to create a steakhouse experience unique to the area.
Davis said he hopes to draw Daytonians and other diners with a menu that includes seafood, fish, pork and Ohio-raised beef, bison and boar.
“We want people in Preble County to love this place,” he said. “We also want to draw people from the outside.”
Davis studied for a time at Sinclair Community College, but said he learned to be a chef during his years working in the kitchen.
Working around the kitchen since age 15, he started as a cook at the Dayton Mall PF Chang’s in 2006 and went on to work as a chef for Norwegian Cruise Lines and McCormick & Schmick's Seafood & Steaks in Beavercreek and Columbus.
He said he loves serving great food and providing a great experience for customers.
“In order to be great, you have to serve great,” he said. “There is nothing better than to see someone happy eating something you have prepared.”
Entrees served at The Bison and The Boar will range from about $22 to $45. Appetizers will start at about $9.
As the name implies, boar and bison — which is leaner and sweeter in taste than beef — will be featured in the restaurant. The restaurant will have a new look inside with a paint called rainstorm blue, antique touches and photos of West Alexandra and Ohio 35 scenes.
Bison burgers and steaks will be new to many diets.
“Some people know about (bison), some people don’t,” he said. “It is a lot healthier. It does have a better taste.”
Emily Mendenhall, the co-owner of Lily’s Bistro in the Oregon District, consulted on the restaurant’s wine and cocktails.